The Navy has a new deputy CIO, Vice Adm. Jeffrey Trussler. His official title is deputy chief of naval operations for information warfare, N2/N6 and director of Naval Intelligence.
Trussler, who will be the top uniformed IT officer under the CIO, replaces Vice Adm. Matthew Kohler, who retired on June 5. The Department of the Navy’s CIO is a civilian position, held by Aaron Weis, with the Navy and Marine Corps each having uniformed officers serving as deputies to him. The Marine Corps’s top IT officer is Lt. Gen. Loretta Reynolds, who assumed her position in October.
Trussler commanded submarines, was an executive officer on ships and served on the Joint Staff and in the Chief of Naval Operations’ office focusing on strategic planning. Primary among his new duties is serving as the head of Naval Intelligence. His promotion to vice admiral was approved by the Senate on March 20.
The decision to have the head of Naval Intelligence assigned as deputy to the CIO followed the shakeup in 2019 that changed some of the IT-related chain of command. Following a cybersecurity review, the department elevated the CIO’s office, giving it more authority over improving the Navy’s cybersecurity posture as well as trying to pull the department out of years of lackluster modernization efforts.
Other services are also trying to rearrange their IT shops. The Army recently split the CIO/G-6 into two positions, one civilian CIO and a three-star general that will serve as deputy chief of staff of the G-6.